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Mohamed Ounajem (L) of Zamalek attacks with Ilyes Chetti of Esperance in pursuit

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Africa roundup: Mighty Esperance close to Tunisian treble

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, Sep 24 Four-time African champions Esperance moved closer to a Tunisian treble after defeating Chebba 2-0 in the FA Cup semi-finals.

The 101-year-old Tunis club topped the league standings and lifted the Super Cup this month and will face US Monastir in the FA Cup final.

Here, AFP Sport rounds up football news from around the continent:

Tunisia

Ivorian Fousseny Coulibaly and Algerian Ilyes Chetti scored the first half goals that gave Esperance a 2-0 victory over Chebba in the Tunisian FA Cup semi-finals.

It was a predictable outcome as champions Esperance finished 32 points above eighth-place Chebba in the recently completed league season.

The other semi-final produced an upset, however, with US Monastir winning 1-0 at league runners-up CS Sfaxien through an extra time goal from Fahmi Ben Romdhane.

South Africa

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Mamelodi Sundowns pocketed 37.4 million rand (Sh239mn) in the 2019/2020 season by winning a South African treble and reaching the CAF Champions League quarter-finals.

The club owned by billionaire Patrice Motsepe, the fourth richest South African, pipped long-time leaders Kaizer Chiefs by two points in a thrilling league race.

They then overcame Bloemfontein Celtic 1-0 to lift the FA Cup, nine months after edging Maritzburg United 2-1 in the League Cup final during a season prolonged by the coronavirus.

Equatorial Guinea

Portuguese Jorge Costa has been named coach of Equatorial Guinea as they prepare for home and away Africa Cup of Nations Group J qualifiers against Libya during November.

He replaces French coach Sebastien Migne, who left the oil-rich central African country this year when the coronavirus pandemic spread to Africa.

Costa, who formerly coached Gabon and Tunisian club CS Sfaxien, inherits a national team ranked 40th in Africa and 145th in the world.

Zambia

Four-time Zambian Premier League-winning coach George Lwandamina has been fired by Zesco United after they came fifth last season.

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Failing to finish among the top four clubs meant United, who are based in mining city Ndola, missed out on qualification for the Confederation of African Football (CAF) competitions.

Lwandamina was in charge of Zesco when they went furthest in a CAF campaign, reaching the 2016 Champions League semi-finals before losing 3-2 on aggregate to Mamelodi Sundowns.

Togo

Claude le Roy, popularly known as the ‘Godfather of African coaches’, is among 11 Frenchmen in charge of African national teams.

The 72-year-old has been guiding Togo since 2016 having previously coached Cameroon, the Democratic Republic of Congo (twice each), Senegal, Ghana and Congo Brazzaville.

While most of the 11 work in predominantly French-speaking west Africa, their popularity has spread with Hubert Velud in charge of Sudan and Julien Mette employed by Djibouti.

Namibia

South Africa-based Namibia stars Peter Shalulile and Deon Hotto have been signed by top sides Mamelodi Sundowns and Orlando Pirates respectively after their previous clubs disbanded.

Forward Shalulile, whose 16 goals enabled him to shared the 2019/2020 South African Premiership Golden Boot award with Malawian Frank Mhango, left Highlands Park for Sundowns.

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When Bidvest Wits revealed that they had sold their franchise to Tshakhuma Tsha Madzivandila, winger Hotto was wanted by Sundowns and Pirates and opted for the Soweto-based Buccaneers.

Cameroon

Former Cameroon World Cup defender Ephrem M’Bom, 66, has died in Cameroonian commercial capital Douala after a long illness, his family said.

He was part of the Indomitable Lions squad that debuted at the World Cup in 1982 and bowed out on goal difference after first round draws with Peru, Poland and Italy in Spain.

M’Bom spent his entire career at home and helped Canon Yaounde win the African Cup of Champions Clubs (now CAF Champions League) in 1978 and 1980.

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